by Azeez Adeniyi
Justice Jude Okeke of the High court of the Federal Capital Territory in Maitama, Abuja, on Wednesday dismissed all 18 count charges against Justice Adeniyi Ademola of the Federal High Court, his wife Olubowale, and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Mr. Joe Agi.
Okeke who discharged the defendants said the prosecution was unable to make out a prima facie case with respect to any of the 18 counts.
Okeke added that no reasonable court would base its conviction on strong suspicion and speculation fueled by the feeling of fight against corruption, in which the charges were built on.
He said the prosecution is supposed to prove them guilty and not the defendans proving their innocence.
Justice Okeke held that the prosecution was unable to make out a prima facie case showing that the sum of N30m paid by Agi into Olubowale’s bank account in three tranches of N10m each between March 11 and 26, 2015, was gratification meant to influence Justice Ademola in his official functions.
The court ruled that the prosecution was unable to prove that the N30m was not a gift as claimed by the defendants
He also mentioned that the 16th witness, an officer of the Department of State Service, Babatunde Adepoju admitted that he could not link the gift of N30m to any case Agi was having before Justice Ademola.
Recall that the charges were filed last year by the Office of the Attorney-General Federation following the raid by Department of State Service’s operatives on the judge’s house on October 7, 2016.